Date: May 2011
Creator: Meidell, Katrin Liza
Description: Pain and performance anxiety (PA) are common problems among string players. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to assess and compare PA and prevalence rates and locations of pain in violinists, violists, cellists, and bassists. Subjects completed a questionnaire that included sections on demographics, musical background, practice habits, musculoskeletal problems, non-musculoskeletal problems, and PA. Anthropometric data were gathered on all 115 subjects. Results show that there are differences in both pain and PA across instrument groups. Violinists reported the highest number of pain sites, followed by violists, bassists, and cellists. The left shoulder was the most-often reported pain site, followed by the neck and right shoulder. Aching was the most cited term selected to describe pain. Several anthropometric indices were significantly correlated with pain, notably right thumb to index finger span in both cellists and bassists. In all instrument groups, at least one pain site was significantly correlated with one of four PA questions. Results warrant the development of intervention strategies and further study of the relationship between pain and performance anxiety.
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